Friday, October 20, 2017

My Secret Sorrow

This post is more of a therapeutic outlet for me to try & cope with something that has been eating away at me for the past several months to a year.

Through all the smiles and laughs, there has been one thing gnawing at the back of my mind.
infertility
Growing up, it was something I thought only happened to a very few people, and definitely not people I knew. Now, I know many people and it is a fear that seems to have entered our own marriage. I never wanted to accept it but it is something that won't go away. An ache that has entered my heart that is getting worse over time. How can you talk about something that is shaming and degrading to you? How could I tell my friends who are having children that their pictures on social media hurt? How could I tell people who ask "When are you having kids?" that their good natured comments sting? But, at the same time, how do you relate to women who have been struggling with this for years and know that ache more than you do? It makes me feel weak to think that my ache is unbearable when they have been dealing with that longer and mine is only a fraction of what they have had to bear. The longing to feel accepted and be told that everything is ok seems forever away because I feel weak and alone. I try and explain what I feel but it never comes out right. I pray to God to be heard and feel at peace. I attend church but see women who are pregnant or have several children who are thanking God for their blessings while the ache grows deeper. Any social gathering where young children are present is becoming harder and harder to attend but how do you tell people that the reason you don't want to go is because of the angel they are holding in their arms reminds you of what you long for and do not have? You try and tell yourself that it is only a short time and that you should not covet what others have. Then you remember wanting to be a mom for as long as you can remember. Picture yourself holding baby dolls and little siblings and cousins and imagining yourself all grown up holding your own children. A desire that is as old as your memories cannot easily be pushed aside. 

Sam & I have recently completed two years of marriage. They have been a wonderful two years and I am grateful for the time we have had together. Two years has also lead to an increase in questions from family and friends which is making it harder. So, to answer questions & try to cope with our struggles, I am writing this post. We have been trying to have kids for about a year now. We are planning on seeing a doctor soon after gathering a little more data/information so we can make informed decisions. Infertility seems to be a struggle on both sides of our family that is not seen in each family. This being said, I had never imagined having to struggle with something like this because I never noticed it. Now, I understand that it is something people around me suffered with but we didn't talk about it (because I was a child and it wasn't my business). Now, my eyes are being opened to this whole world of women & men who are struggling with infertility, and have been for years. The various treatments & diagnosis are as different as people, which makes sense when we as people are all different. The one thing that seems to be consistent is the pain. Every person experiences this strong awareness of a pain within them. For me, it happens every month when I realize that, once again, I am not pregnant. It's this feeling that there is something wrong with me or that I have done something wrong & God is punishing me. It's a hurt that is deeper than any pain I have ever experienced. It makes me question if I have any worth in this world. Will I ever be the mother I've wanted for as long as I can remember? Are people judging me as the "career type woman" because I am a teacher & not a stay-at-home mom? Will my husband still love me if we can't have our own children? Is adoption even an option because so many people want infants? These questions play through my brain each month and cause me to break down once I am safe in the confines of our home. I sit & cry for hours with Sam holding me & telling me it will be okay & that he loves me. And, as much as his words comfort me, the pain doesn't go away. It makes me want to keep away from the world, avoid family gatherings, avoid meetings with friends that have new little babies, avoid any social networking site because of the baby announcements & pictures, as happy as I am for those who have been blessed with a child. It's a sorrow that I am afraid will surface on top of the joy for those friends & family.

I hope this helps someone understand a glimpse into the struggle many people have been struggling with for many years and also understand why I may keep my distance from certain occasions. It's not that I'm mad. I just don't want to lose my brave face at your happy occasion as we try to find answers and, hopefully one day, have our own family. 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Blessings of Life

It has been months since I have thought about blogging. Sam and I have celebrated a year of marriage. I am a third grade teacher for my last year at BYU. Life has been really good, which is probably why I haven't thought of  typing here. Tonight, as I try to fall asleep and sleep escapes me, I have been reflecting on my blessings. I have not had a serious migraine in a long time (as in months). I have 21 children that give me the best and worst days possible. I have wonderful coworkers that help me through the worst days. I have a sweet husband who cooks and cleans for me when I don't have time and has a shoulder and loving arms when tears roll down my cheeks. I feel so blessed. It doesn't make me a little nervous because life has been really good the past few months but I will enjoy these blessings while I can. 

Another thought I have had is how people enter our lives for a reason. I have seen friends come and go and come back again, or probably will never return, and that has led me to reflect on their purpose in my life. Some relationships have been good and taught me how to be a better person and other have ended poorly which have taught me to be careful and be grateful for what I have. Everyone has agency which can be difficult to accept when we think we are right. I am so grateful that I know God has a plan for me and I do not have to always know the right answer or who is in the right/wrong. 

So, that was a jumble of thoughts before I sleep. I'm still dwelling in them but need to rest my head so good night. And Merry Christmas. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

The Struggle

It has been a long time since I have written anything on here and there are several reasons for that which I do not have the time to get into.

Today I am feeling extremely blessed as the Lord has continually helped me finally begin to understand my largest struggle in life....headaches.

Many who are reading this have probably seen previous posts where I talk about this struggle. Today, although I still suffer from headaches and migraines with no for sure way to cure them, I feel at peace, which is a first for many years.

Last Thursday, I was sitting in one of my religion classes at BYU and we were discussing the story of the woman with an issue of blood (Matthew 9:20-22). As we studied this account, I was drawn to the detail that she had had this problem for 12 years. I began to count in my head and realized, this fall, I will have suffered with headaches for 12 years as well. I began to feel a connection to this woman and her struggle and how alone she must have felt when she would think she was healed and would not be, when she would hear a doctor say that they had the answer and her spirits would lift and then she would feel the crushing disappointment when it did not work. The struggle of trying to explain this problem was not her fault and how it kept her from doing some things within her life but did not feel like anyone could understand.

As we talked about her joy at being healed through her faith, I felt as though something was telling me that God is aware of me and, at some point, I will be healed. It was the first touch of hope I have had in a few months.

Yesterday was Tuesday and I attended the usual BYU devotional. The speaker talked about believing through trials and not letting our doubts overcome the things we know. Once again, I felt like the spirit was talking to me and letting me know that all will be ok. Although I have not found a cure and I may not find one for a long time, the Lord will take care of me and help me do the things I need to.

Today, I felt like I should read a blog post that someone had liked on facebook. At first, I did not think I would relate in anyway to this mother who was sure she would be losing her two-year-old to cancer. Then, she began to talk about how prophets she had grown up reading about had had to go through trying times in order to align their own will to God's.

I know that I was given this trial for a reason and that God is aware of me. I know that we can find peace through Christ and that He can heal us. Our Heavenly Father has a plan and knows when the timing is perfect to teach us about what we are supposed to be. I know that I will be healed one day and that I can still live a good life although I struggle with migraines and headaches on a regular basis. I know if you are going through something that is difficult, He will help you and give you peace when you think there is none left. He loves His children more than we can ever know in this life.

Monday, December 14, 2015

If I Could...

Sometimes I wish I could go back and time so that I could make the right choice and not have to deal with the outcome I have found myself in. Then, I think, no, this is supposed to happen and I will grow from this. Now, don't get me wrong, it takes a while to get to that point. I think everyone has that struggle. It seems like an easy out when the body is weary and the eyes are puffy from tears. Life isn't easy, though. It is supposed to help us become better and stronger and realize our weaknesses. When we are not being humble, God humbles us and helps us chip off some of the bad parts of us to become a little better each day.

Sometimes it feels like a hammer on our heart has shattered everything who we are but we can find peace. Sometimes it is a little thing that seems big because it's the last thing to be given us but we can find peace. Sometimes it seems it won't end and that the future will be shattered because of it but we can find peace.

Although life may not go as we plan, God knows what He wants us to be and how to get us there. That will usually change our plans of how we want our life to turn out.

I know that's how it always is for me.

Sometimes it hurts more than we think we can bear. Then, when we think we can't hold on any longer, God brings peace, if we are willing to go to Him. Christ is the Prince of Peace. He told the storm, "Peace, be still." He tells us to "Be still and know that [He is] God."

I know He is there and will give us peace and rest from our trials and struggles when we look to Him.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Headache Struggles

Picture from: firstmedok.com

I do not share this information for pity but, rather, to let others know that they are not alone. Recently, I have begun to try and see my cluster headaches/migraines as a blessing. 

From the time I began middle school, I began suffering from migraines. At first, we thought it was my heavy backpack and stress that was causing them. Then, the thought was sugar. Now, it may be that they are cluster headaches. There have been multiple nights I have woken up sobbing from pain and frustration in trying to understand why I have this struggle.


As I was reading from The Book of Mormon this morning, I read 2 Nephi 33:3-4. Here, Nephi is talking to the people and saying that he prays for the people and knows God will help them. As I read these words, I felt like maybe my story can help someone else and maybe my tears are not all for nothing.

Recently, my frustration with my headaches has risen and more tears have been shed than have been in awhile. During a few of these episodes, I began to pray out loud expressing my sorrow and confusion. I wanted answers right then and I wanted to feel peace. Well, I still do not have all the answers but, I have felt peace. I may not be able to clean my house but, I have been able to work on homework as I lay in bed with an upset stomach and slight headache. I may not be able to run around fixing all the problems in my life but, I have been humbled by the selfless service of my husband in my times of need. It has made me want to be more selfless when I am well enough to help others. I have been trying to be more positive and the Lord has blessed me to try and see a little more positive. God knows us and our struggles. He will never leave us alone. If we seek His help, He will help us through. As 1 Corinthians 10:13 says,

"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." 


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Reality Check

It has been awhile since I have been here to write about life. The update: I'm married, in the middle of a practicum semester and realizing the reality of being a homemaker.

Things with my husband couldn't be better. He is so sweet and helps me work through problems and supports me 24/7. School, on the other hand, has been more than I can handle sometimes...

I don't think I have cried so much over the work I have to do since high school calculus. The strange thing is- it's really not that bad. I'm keeping up with my work but barely holding on to sanity because I feel all I do is homework, cook, clean, sleep, and complain. I've realized it's impossible to keep a home clean each day and there is always something else to do.

How can I be this perfect wife if our apartment still has dirty dishes in the sink? 

Because my husband loves me and appreciates what I do get done.

I'm a perfectionist and that can be very hard at times. It's hard to sleep because I have so much I need to accomplish in the morning. I'm always making lists of things I need to do before such and such day. My scripture study has become more of a checklist item than the strength I need it to be.

As I was laying in bed wide awake- again- I realized that I need to stop this. I don't feel like myself because I am always feeling inadequate and that is making me feel depressed. Things that normally wouldn't bug me are triggers to a slight anger. That's not me.

I am a child of God. I go through hard times but those hard times don't define me. They help me become better if I am only willing to learn from them.

So, maybe I didn't get the bathroom clean today and I still have a ton of homework and projects due in the next few weeks but, I can do it and I can be happy as I do it. Now, I may not feel so determined in the morning when I wake up but, it's day by day, step by step, that allows for change. Who knows, maybe I will even get to call my family at some point this week! Wouldn't my mother and father like that. ;)